Annual General Meeting
8.00 PM Wednesday 11th October, 2017
The Chiltern Room
Chinnor Village Centre, High Street, Chinnor
The Association will be holding its Annual General Meeting as above and you are cordially invited. This is your opportunity to have your say, both complimentary and critical and to discuss how you would like to see the Association develop over the coming years. So please make every effort to attend.
Annual Plot rents become due from 1st October and you will be required to pay by the end of October 2017, otherwise your plot may be deemed vacant and re-let, so please make every effort to visit the Distribution Centre any Sunday between 10.00 am and 12 noon before the end of October. You can pay at the AGM if this is more convenient.
Order forms for pre-ordering/purchasing seed potatoes are attached with a deadline of 15th October, so please ensure you place your order before the due date so as not to be disappointed.
If you would like to be a more active member of the Association, why not volunteer to join the Committee. Voting for Chairman and other members of the Committee takes place at the AGM and nominations, in writing need to be received by the Secretary, no later than 29th September 2017. Please use the Nomination papers attached.
We look forward to having a worthwhile and interesting AGM, made all the more so by your participation; afterwards you are invited to join the Committee for wine and nibbles.
Minutes of C.A.G.A. Annual General Meeting on 11th October 2017
Present: Ged Wells (Chairman) ; Stuart Harding (Treasurer) ; Diane Troye (Temporary Secretary)
The minutes of last year’s AGM were agreed as a true and correct record. There were no matters arising. The Chairman welcomed Sarah Higgs and Pat Hayward from Chinnor Parish Council to the AGM.
Attendance: 27 members approximately
Main Gate & Drive:
The entrance gate from Station Road to the Distribution Centre (DC) has been out of action during 2017 with numerous repairs having been unsuccessful. A substantial heavy duty new gate has been ordered and is being funded by Chinnor Parish Council (CPC). This will be erected further up the drive way by some 20 yards. Thanks to CPC given.
A reminder was given to all plot holders to lock the gate last thing
A passing place was requested in 2016 however due to a blind spot it was deemed too dangerous to pursue.
All plot holders need to be careful when exiting out on to Station Road as exit is not clear due to large tree and fence inhibiting vision.
No decision has been made in 2016. Opinions were canvassed which found there to be a 50/50 split. An online survey is now to be undertaken by Frans to assess plot holders opinions.
These have been improved. A larger board has been erected at the Scout Hut car park end.
Allotment Centre Road:
This is to be closed at the end of October. All plot holders are reminded not to park along the road, it is to be used only for dropping off.
When driving down the centre road please be careful not to knock the stand pipes / taps.
The Growing Year 2017 Review:
The start of the year was quite cold resulting in the growing season being delayed with many plot holders having an up and down season. The judge in August remarked on the good state of the plots and new plot holders have done well. Pete Bowler has undertaken to strim and spray vacant plots to keep weeds to a minimum prior to letting for which he is thanked. This is to aim at assisting beginners but it should be noted that they should be prepared to undertake the bulk of the main work.
One outgoing plot holder has left / abandoned a lot of items on a plot which will need to be cleared by a contractor.
Plot 30 has been left vacant so it could be utilized for composting. Sadly this has been taken advantage of by some plot holders so will now be closed for the foreseeable future. All plot holders are therefore advised to remove all their waste to the local tip and not dump it on Plot 30.
The possibility of having small sheds has been raised. Especially in consideration of new plot holders where it is recognised that modern houses have only small gardens so storage at home is difficult. It is generally felt that the mood is now for change and need to look towards the future in order to keep up with the times.
Chinnor Flower Show:
Attendance was good but produce was down on previous years. It is vital if such shows are to continue then they need to be supported or ultimately they will close. Flowers were deemed to be more popular than veg this year. It is therefore important that Allotment holders do what they can to support the show and encourage attendance.
Use of Allotment Equipment:
The Association provides such items as a lawn mower, strimmer and rotavator for the use by all plot holders who must exercise care when using them, All that is asked is the item be returned in a clean condition and a donation be made towards up keep and petrol.
Volunteer working parties are essential in maintaining the Allotment as a whole. Getting plot holders to volunteer has been difficult so the website will be employed to see if more plot holders will come forward to give up a few hours of their time as and when a working party is needed.
No complaints have been received this year from CPC however caution still needs to be taken by plot holders when the wind direction is wrong.
Plot Letting Duties:
Ged has now handed over these duties to Frans Lytzen and in future all enquiries are to be passed to him.
Plot Termination Notices:
A 30 day Notice To Quit a plot will now only be served once with the notice end date being final. No further chances or revision will be allowed. A notice once served will be final.
Questions From The Floor:
Q: Can items on abandoned plot be distributed to other plot holders?
A: Termination date was end of August and plot should have been cleared by then. This matter will be discussed again by the committee.
Q: Thanks to Pete Bowler to be given for doing main clearance of plots – unanimous thanks from the floor expressed.
Q: Could the Plot judging be pushed back a month, to allow a slightly longer growing period?
A: To be discussed at Committee meeting, will require the BBQ to be rescheduled to coincide with prize giving.
Q: Judging guidance is not in the remit of the Association, with the rules being set by the RHS.
A: Agreed judging criteria will be put on website as well as displayed on the notice boards.
Q: Could we have judging based on similar Pole sized plots – to encourage a fairer basis for judging.
A: To be discussed at Committee Meeting.
Q: Same plot holders always seem to win why is this?
A: The winner of the Best Plot 2017 category was won by a holder who has a lot of produce diversity on his plot which is over and above other plot holders. Judging is done using RHS rules which scores diversity highly and that is why it is won by the same plot holder. Consideration will therefore be taken into account on how future judging will be undertaken and comments / suggestions from all plot holders are therefore welcomed. Please pass your comments and suggestions on to the Chairman.
Q: Apart from the Annual BBQ social events are no longer run, why was this? Could quiz nights or a Saturday morning coffee and cake quiz be considered?
A: From looking back at past notices up to 1995 little has changed with visits and excursions having now ended due to lack of support. It is agreed the committee will revisit this subject and see if there is any interest from plot holders to have such social events.
Q: A problem expressed in that plot holders do not know the names of Committee members nor what they look like so issues can be raised to them when necessary.
A: It is agreed that all Committee members names will be published and a notice put on the DC notice board. Also members names and photos will be put on the website and kept up to date. All plot holders should be made aware that all monthly meetings are open to everyone and therefore plot holders are welcome to attend and speak openly to the committee.
Shop Income is up slightly on 2016 at £4759.00.
Electricity and heating was also up on 2016 due to heating the DC when the annual potato tubers were stored there.
CPC has also increased the annual rent once again.
Total expenditure was £3319.00 which is the lowest since 2011 which has resulted in an overall net increase over the year.
Total assets are good at £11,915.00.
Questions From The Floor:
Q: Is there any funds available for updating the kitchen?
A: Agreed this will be considered. A working party is to be put together to look at what improvements can be made to the facilities.
Q: Why are shop sales down? It is not clear what items are for sale?
A: A list of what is sold at the shop is to be put on the website for everyone to look at. Also the committee is to look at producing a welcome pack for new plot holders which will incorporate the shop. A new shop notice board is also to be purchased to better advertise the shop.
Q: Can C.P.C provide a figure for what they have funded in 2017?
A: This will be looked at by the Council and replies made once known.
Shop Manager Report:
Due to absence of Shop Manager no report was given
Election of Officers:
In the absence of new nominees the existing Chairman and Treasurer are duly re-elected.
The post of Secretary is currently vacant. Diane Troye offered to share the position with someone else should someone come forward.
Currently the committee is short of members so a request is made for more people to come forward and volunteer.
The duties of a Committee Member is to be published on the website for all to see.
Two new members have joined the Committee : Jeanette Hyland and Steve Colley. Both are welcomed and thanked.
Report given by Frans Lytzen.
The website is now up and running and full functional. It is the main means of marketing the Allotments and attracting new plot holders. The Allotments are also on Google Maps.
Using the website for promoting social events will not be easy. Communication is best done by Email and Facebook. There is now a forum on Facebook for people to talk about their plot. A plea is made to all plot holders to use Facebook and join in which is hoped in turn will encourage a community spirit. It should be noted that Facebook should not be used as a means of running the allotment. It is there for people to share and add notes and tips about their produce growing experiences.
Emails will be sent out more frequently in respect of volunteer working parties, meeting minutes and social events like the annual BBQ, Christmas lunch and quizzes etc.
Emails will come directly from the Committee as opposed from an individual so all plot holders are asked to check their spam folders to make sure they are getting them.
Manure: It is no longer possible for the Association to source manure for plot holders as there is no longer anywhere to put it.
Thanks are given to the Church for allowing the Association to use their chairs and benches
Thanks are given to all those who helped erect the marquee for the Summer BBQ and thanks to Ali in particular for cooking the wonderful food.
Thanks are also expressed to Paul Carstairs for all he has done over the years in running the shop etc. Our thoughts go out to him.
Meeting was then drawn to a close and was followed by refreshments.